Saturday, February 23, 2013

Andrew's birth story part 3

Normally, waiting 45 minutes to cut the placenta is not dangerous. But, in my case with the placenta still being attached to me, it continued to pump blood into Andrew for to long. It gave him to much blood.I found out from a nurse later that usually after a baby takes his first breath it signals the placenta to stop pumping blood. In my case it did not.
The EMT's arrived and I remember thinking so many different things. "Was my baby going to be okay?" "This is not how this was supposed to happen. I am supposed to be going home in a few hours to my house. I just did the hardest thing that I have ever done and I am not going to the hospital." Also, it is sort of silly now but I did not want all these strange men to come in. I was not dressed. I was embarrassed for them to see me like this. But, I think the hardest part for me was when they told me that the baby could not ride with me in the ambulance. They were taking him in his own ambulance so they could work on him separately. I cried and cried. He was not even an hour old yet and they wanted to take him away. Jonathan told me that he would not leave him. He would stay with him the entire time. That gave me a bit of comfort. I found out later that the head EMT told Jonathan that it was against policy to allow him to ride in the back of the ambulance. But, another EMT told Jonathan to forget policy and that he could ride in the back with our son. I am grateful for a kind act like this in such a stressful time.
While I was in the ambulance, they hooked me up to another IV, a heart monitor and oxygen. At the time I really thought this was all overkill. I felt the same I had felt after giving birth to my other children. I was tired and weak and wanted to sleep. I would close my eyes and than the questions would start coming. He wanted to keep me talking and I was annoyed. I just wanted to sleep. I remember that he asked me my name 5 times and all I could think of was "why can't he remember my name?"
So we get to the hospital and they take me straight up to labor and delivery. But, they could not get the bleeding to stop and they could not get the placenta to detach. A doctor came in and thought that it was just a stubborn placenta and started to push really hard on my stomach while trying to pull the placenta. It was so painful. I was screaming in pain for him to stop. It was worse than the labor I had just gone through. He said "if I can't get it to detach than we will have to put you under and take it." I told him to do that. It ended up being a big blessing that it didn't come off on its own. I had what was called placenta accreta. This is where the placenta has an abnormally deep attachment to the uterine wall. If he would have been able to detach my placenta it would have ripped out part of my uterus and caused all kinds of problems. Of course we did not find any of this out until he actually put me under. When I woke up, I was back in my room. I was getting a blood transfusion. I found out later that I had lost a total of 3200cc of blood which was about half of my blood volume.
In the meantime Andrew was up in NICU. They were trying to help him breath better and they also had to drain some of his blood out of his body. The doctor told Jonathan that this was very dangerous as his blood could become to thick and cause a stroke.They were also worried of infections so they started him on antibiotics.
All I wanted to do was get up there and feed him and hold him. It was just killing me to be separated from him. I ended up not being able to go see him until about 7:00 that night. He was hooked up to so many wires. There were two coming out of his belly button. A heart monitor, a breathing monitor and blood pressure monitor. I could barely hold him and I just wanted to cry. But, I was so very grateful that he was safe, that for the most part we were both safe.
One of the questions that I get asked is would I do things differently if I knew all of this ahead of time? Would I have given birth in a hospital instead of a birthing center? I probably would have chosen differently but, my labor and delivery were exactly what I wanted. I did not want all the complications afterwards but, everything else was just as I had imagined.


Anonymous said...

Such a scary event! I was so worried for you Mel! I broke down at work and wanted to come help. My boss wouldn't let me leave until he knew I was okay enough to drive myself to you. So once I was, I left and started driving... Which is when I realized I didn't know where you were. So I kept calling Amber and Jonathan trying to figure it out. So glad you two are doing so well and that all has turned out okay. Love - Lindsey :)

A Dean said...

Mel, you are my best friend! Loosing Joel was the hardest thing that I have ever had to go through. I am so grateful that the Lord kept you here. Tears run down my face thinking that I could ever loose you too. I know everything happens for a reason and this sure makes me appreciate you and all of my sisters in my life.
Love you!